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Family Activities at Wars of the Roses – Something New!

East Kingdom Gazette - Sun, 2017-05-21 10:17

Olivia Baker, reporting

This year at Wars of the Roses, we are doing something a little different. Rather than having specific family activities, we are encouraging and facilitating participation in all of the aspects of the event (to the extent legally and safely possible). Too much have we heard about families who cannot participate in “main” event activities and teens who are bored with crafts. There is always something to learn or help with, and it is our goal this year to provide as many opportunities for youth and their families to enjoy the event together as possible.

(1) There is always something to help with. We will provide a list of many of the activities happening at the event and things they will need volunteers for. Appropriate age ranges will be included so youth can easily find opportunities to help with the “main” Event.

(2) There is always something to learn. There will be many classes, and we will have a Village building full of artisans (and free play space) willing to share their craft and let anyone who is interested try it out. We are working with those who submit classes to have them post age ranges for their classes, and we encourage teachers to consider teaching beginner-level classes that would be appropriate for younger children as well. We are also looking for youth who would like to sponsor a competition at the Event.

(3) There is always someplace to be part of. The Village building will be a family-friendly space with free-play areas, artisan stations, and social space. It is a place where families can come to socialize, work on arts/sciences/handwork/etc, and play while enjoying “what we do in the SCA.” This is not the only place where families and youth are encouraged to participate. It is a sheltered area with boundaries that is explicitly family-friendly. Our goal is to keep families involved with the activities of the Event rather than sending them to a separated space.

We hope to see many families with all members engaged and enjoying the Event. If you have questions or suggestions, or you would like to volunteer to assist or teach, please contact me as soon as you can so we can talk!

If you’re interested in helping out with Family Activities, please contact the Family Activities Coordinator directly. 

Please remember that parents are responsible for their children at all times. Please be sure to familiarize yourself with the East Kingdom Chancellor Minor Policies

Below is the current schedule of family-friendly activities!

SATURDAY:

11:00 AM – Anyone Can Make Largesse! (Lady Finnguala ingen Neill meic Chuircc) — A class/workshop about what Largesse is and ideas for what SCAdians in various age groups and skill levels can make. A table with materials and idea/instruction sheets will be available for open use during the day on both Saturday and Sunday. Young children will need an older helper, not just adult supervision. Ages 4+

12:00 – 1:00 PM – Family-Friendly Songs for the SCA: a singalong and learning circle for sharing youth-appropriate tunes. Bring copies of our favorite SCA-and-youth-appropriate song lyrics to share!

1:00 PM – Origami (Paper Folding) for Beginners (Anna Elisabetta deValladolid) — A family-friendly class for ages 6+

1:00 PM – Storytime for the Littles (hosted by Inlé) — Come hear stories and maybe find a new favorite! We will be sharing our favorite SCA-appropriate picture books and reading some aloud. This will focus on stories appropriate for ages under 6. Live storytellers also welcome to stop by and share!

1:30 – 3:00 PM – Family Field Games — Active games for kids, family, and friends to play together that get you up and moving around!

3:00-5:00 PM – Heraldic Games! (Lady Cecelie Vogelgesangkin) — Using Registered names and devices, these games will include trivia, spelling attempts, and drawing for a full gamut of entertainment. Fun for ALL ages, they will work best with mixed age groups, so don’t be shy about joining in.

4:00 – 5:00 PM – Medieval Soda and Other Non-Alcoholic Drinks (lærifaðir Magnus hvalmagi) — We know a lot about adult beverages of medieval people, but did you know that non-alcoholic beverages were just as common (if not more)? Yup, believe it or not, soda is period! Come learn how to make some of these tasty drinks with things you can get from the grocery store!

7:00 PM – Human Chess (hosted by Mistress Ose Silverhair)

8:00 PM – Teen Roundtable (followed by Teen Social)

SUNDAY:

10:00 AM – Woven Wood (Master Angus Pembridge) — A hands-on demo of making wattle panels/fences/edging/etc.

11:00 AM – Viking Wire Weaving (Lady Shannon inghean Bhrain ui Dhuilleain) — Learn how to make those nifty woven wire necklaces (and other things) you see people wearing with their Viking-age garb. We’ll get started; students may not finish, but will be able to take their projects home to work on them. Material fee $5, age 16+, class size limit 8.

12:30 PM – Refilling the Kingdom Toychest (Lady Finnguala ingen Neill meic Chuircc) — What goes into filling the toy chest that gets brought out when the King and Queen visit? How can we help keep it full? Ideas and materials will be available. Let’s see how much we can get done to give back to the toychest!


Filed under: Events, Local Groups, Youth Activities

Ancient bronze stud stolen from Pompeii exhibition

History Blog - Sat, 2017-05-20 22:49

Today in people are the worst news, a bronze artifact from the 6th century B.C. has been stolen from an exhibition at the archaeological site of Pompeii. The object was a door ornament on loan from the National Archaeological Museum of Basilicata in Potenza. It’s not of great monetary value. Just 7.3 inches in diameter and relatively plain in decoration, it was insured for 300 euros ($333).

The piece is of great historical meaning to Basilicata, however, as it was discovered at one of the most important archaeological sites in the region: a hill known as Torre di Satriano where a Norman castle, of which only the tower remains, once dominated the land. Excavations beginning in the 1960s (the first led by pioneer of early Italian archaeology R. Ross Holloway) have discovered evidence of human habitation of the site going back to the second millennium B.C., developing into a complex system of terraced settlements in the 8th century B.C. inhabited by the Peuketiantes, a local people who by the 6th century B.C. were building elaborate multi-use structures influenced by artistic and architectural styles of Greek colonies in Taranto and Corinth. One of the archaeologists who has excavated Torre di Satriano is Massimo Osanna, today the director of the archaeological site of Pompeii.

Massimo Osanna, the director general of the Pompeii archaeological site, expressed dismay. “In addition to being a gesture that injures Pompeii and Italy’s cultural heritage, even though it is not a priceless piece, it hits me on a personal level and it was an area where I had conducted the excavation myself,” he said.

The bronze stud was an example of that connection between one of the ancient Italic peoples of southern Italy and the colonies of Magna Grecia, which is why it was on display in the Pompeii and the Greeks exhibit in Pompeii’s Palestra Grande (the large gym). One of several bronze ornaments unearthed at the 6th century structure at Torre di Satriano, the wooden door they once adorned had long since decayed. For the exhibition, the stud was set down the middle of a cartoon-like replica of the door with three others just like it, while two larger, highly ornamented bronze knockers were placed on each side, recreating what archaeologists believe was the original placement.

The director of the Basilicata Regional Museum Hub, Marta Ragozzino, voiced “solidarity to my friend and colleague Massimo Osanna”.

“Above and beyond its extraordinary Lucanian context, which Osanna himself investigated and which the show on Pompeii and the Greeks has finally unveiled to the public, the stolen relic has modest value,” she said.

“But a gesture of this kind leaves us incredulous and pained, a gesture that attacks and wounds the cultural heritage that belongs to the community and, when brought to Pompeii, the whole world”.

The theft was discovered by security guards on the evening of Wednesday, May 17th, at around 8:00 PM. That means the stud was stolen during visiting hours, a bold and/or foolhardy choice since the thieves would have had to get behind the protective plexiglass panel in full public view and unscrew the bronze piece from the door-like panel. After hours, the room is under video surveillance. Police are now reviewing the tapes to see if the perpetrators can be identified.

There have been rumblings about the quality of the security — the ALES firm has the security contract for the Ministry of Cultural Heritage — for some time. To have an artifact stolen in front of the guards’ noses in broad daylight hasn’t exactly silenced the doubters.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Master Thorpe Wins Forged In Fire Competition

AEthelmearc Gazette - Sat, 2017-05-20 00:15

Master Thorpe displays the African blade he made in his home forge for the third round of the show Forged In Fire. Photo by THL Fionnghuala.

By Baroness Katja (Chris Adler-France)

Æthelmearc fans of the History Channel’s metalsmithing competition, Forged In Fire, recognized a familiar face last week: Master John Michael Thorpe.

One of four competitors in the sixth episode of the fourth season of the show, Master Thorpe was named the champion of that episode’s challenge and won the $10,000 prize.

In each episode of the reality TV competition show, four entrants forge bladed weapons in a three-round elimination, with the first two three-hour rounds to create and improve a specific kind of knife out of a specific kind of metal in a Brooklyn, NY studio. The two finalists then have five days to create a specific historic sword in their home workshops before returning to the studio for their creation to be judged in a series of sharpness and sturdiness tests. Past competitions have challenged contestants to create such blades as Japanese katanas, Elizabethan rapiers, Norse battle axes, Scottish claymores, German katzbalger, and cavalry sabres. (See the Wikipedia article here for more about the show’s history.)

A metalworking Laurel and an SCA member since 1982, Master Thorpe has lived in Myrkfaelinn, Nithgaard, Thescorre, and now Delftwood for the past 13 years. He has three apprentices and is the founder and guild master of the Royal Guild of Æthelmearc Metalsmiths. He has served in a number of officer roles over the years, including kingdom chronicler, baronial seneschal, and several rapier marshallates.

He talked to The Gazette about the competition experience:

Q: First, congratulations on your win! Second, how long have you been a practicing blacksmith/silversmith and what experience do you have with metallurgy?

I have been making knives since I was about 14 and forging them since about 1990 or so. I am mostly self taught as a blade smith, but have learned a lot about metallurgy and blade performance from ABS Mastersmith Kevin Cashen, and Tim Zowada, and have had long discussions with Dr. Roman Landes, who literally wrote (in German) the authoritative book on the metallurgy of sharpness. I started working with metal professionally as a bench jeweler at 19, although my first exposure to the jewelry trade was in fourth grade (when a silversmith visited his class as part of the American Bicentennial celebrations). I learned enough by watching him that I was able to teach myself chasing and repousse from memory eight years later and  started making jewelry in my dorm room at RIT (Rochester Institute of Technology).

When I dropped out for a year on sick leave I went to work at a wholesale jewelry repair shop in Ithaca, where I worked my way up from polisher to bench jeweler. Repairing thousands of chains and sizing hundreds of rings is a great way to refine the fundamentals of your craft!

I taught myself metallurgy so that I could make better knives, and so that I could make a metallurgically correct 13th century knife to prove Laurel wrong when he said to someone that you could make a perfectly accurate 13th century knife that would work as well as the period ones by filing a blade out of the welding steel you get at a hardware store. I learned enough metallurgy in the process that despite my math education effectively ending after 9th grade, I was hired as a metallurgical associate engineer at an aerospace superalloy manufacturing plant, testing the metal that spins at high temperatures inside jet engines, and at one point was literally doing rocket science with tools that Benvenuto Cellini would recognize (using a chasing hammer and miniature carving chisels to collect samples for chemical analysis from the castings that became the main engine nozzles for the last three space shuttle missions).

Q: From watching the episode, it certainly appeared that you were very familiar with the competition’s specific expectations, such as the tests to gauge that the weapons were actually usable and not just impressive looking. So, how did you learn about this competition show and when did you begin watching it?

I initially learned about Forged in Fire when my wife (THL Fionnghuala inghean Diarmada) stumbled on it somewhere in the first season. I came down to watch the “cooking show about bladesmithing” and recognized one of the contestants from one of the bladesmithing hammer-ins I am a regular at. I went back and watched all of the episodes that were available and started watching regularly.

As to the specific expectations of the show, at one level, my focus in bladesmithing has always been on performance. A knife is a tool, I have always put function first, edge geometry (which determines sharpness), edge metallurgy (which determines how long an edge will continue cutting), and blade geometry (which determines how well a blade will pass through the medium it is cutting), how it will dissipate stress, etc.

The society of bladesmiths I have been a member of for over a decade, the New England Bladesmiths Guild (http://ashokanknifeseminar.com/), is a group of bladesmiths who organized the Ashokan Seminar as a vehicle to allow advancing knowledge of metallurgical science and bladesmithing outside of the heavily hype driven atmosphere of the more mainstream knife communities.

Q: What made you decide to enter this competition?

I am a horrible person. I sat and watched the show, armchair quarterbacking as the competition progressed with my wife (she can now recognize problems developing and strategic errors almost as quickly as I do, and as time went on I started bouncing some of my strategic ideas off of her for input).

As time went on, my ego got the best of me and I began to think that I could stand my ground against at least half of the winners skill-set wise, and that I had a better grasp of metallurgical knowledge than the majority of the competitors I had seen. I know and have shared an anvil with more than a few of the past episode winners, and I have a great deal of respect for the ones I know, but I felt that I had about a 50/50 chance in any given group and challenge.

Q: How did you prepare for the competition?

Since I don’t typically make blades over about five inches in length, before I even considered applying, I tested myself by forging a series of three blades giving myself a two-hour time limit from bar stock to quenched. I figured that if I could do that using all hand tools reliably, that would leave an hour for dealing with whatever material challenge curveball was thrown at me. When I proved to myself that I could do that, I sent in my application.

Q: First, you had to forge a Kukri (a large angled knife from Nepal) within a couple of hours in the studio with the other three contestants, then you and the other finalist had several days to make a specific blade in your home workshops. Had you ever made a Kukri or bent blade before? What were your thoughts about the in-studio challenge? Had you ever used the specific type of metal you were given to use?

Funny that you ask… I had never made a Kukri before, and in previous seasons competitors had always been tasked with “making a blade in their own signature style” for rounds one and two. I do not really have large blade signature style that would be appropriate for the typical performance tests, so I was planning to do a Persian style with a curved, tapered blade and trailing point, as that would perform well in the typical performance tests from the previous seasons. Then, they served up a curveball having us make a knife in (show judge) Jason Knight’s signature style. I had never intentionally made a blade with that kind of curve before. During the application process, the producer asked me if I had ever made anything “curvy or weird” before, so I ran out to the forge and made a quick serpentine dagger blade and emailed her the picture.

The Akrafena.

As to the type of steel, W1, I have used it to make little hand tools for chasing and repousse, but not for making a big blades. It is chemically similar to some other steels I have used, it is one of the most basic common tool steels, but not one of my usual choices for anything big.

Q: Had you ever made an Akrafena (an Ashanti sword with a perforated bulbous blade) or other large blade with cut-outs before? Your immediate response on the show, when told what you had to make, was that it was “scary.”

I have made several straight-bladed swords before, but not finished any of them into complete swords as I did not have the appropriate equipment to successfully heat-treat anything big to my standards (and the one rapier where I farmed out the heat treatment came back looking like a pretzel). The day before I left to go compete, I made a 45-inch-long electric heat treatment kiln (in his workshop) on the off-chance that I might make it to the final round and have to make something big, but I had not wired it or tested it before I left for New York. I did not have a quench tank big enough for a sword either.

I was not expecting to make it to the final round as I had not had any time to actually practice between the producers contacting me that it looked like I might be a contestant and when I had to get on a plane.

Q: What were your expectations when you entered the competition?

I went down with two goals: the first being to not get eliminated in the first round, and the second being to not embarrass my wife (Okay, not getting permanently injured is was also important.) Everything else was just gravy and experience points. I was going down to have fun.

Getting to the third round and facing the challenge of doing this extremely curved African sword with weird geometry and cutouts in the blade was intimidating. Then, adding in the logistical challenges that I had not had time to build any of the equipment that would speed up the build and make dealing with the odd shape easy was an extra piece of intimidation, not to mention that I was facing an opponent who had pulled off the unthinkable comeback (in the second round). I literally wired up the temperature control and modified a pottery kiln into a top-loading heat-treat kiln and welded up a quench tank during my home forge time with the camera recording my every move and the clock running. There were tons of logistical challenges to meet, and that was before I scrapped my first blade on the third day, and forge-welded five bars together to make up a bar with enough mass for a second attempt.

Q: How did you approach the Akrafena challenge? What was your process, how was it different or similar to blades you’ve made for the Society? What went well, what was the most difficult aspect of the challenge? How much did you research the historical weapon and how did that affect your design?

I researched the Akrafena on the Internet in the 32 hours I had between finding out that I was a finalist and the time my home forge time started. I was hoping that I would find one in the African section at the Metropolitan Museum of Art the morning before I flew back, but no luck. I analyzed about 20 examples and did up a CAD template that was true to the characteristics of the historic examples, and found about 30 pages of Adinkra symbols.

Then, after three days everything went sideways and I approached it basically as an exercise in situational triage. I started out with plans to make a fancy, very historically accurate piece while still following the design specifics designated in the rules. Things started to go wrong and I had to scrap the first attempt blade because it would be 1/8-inch shy of the required minimum in one dimension after finish grinding and trying to pull it out was not going as planned. I hit a point where I was not confident and abandoned my three days of work, starting over while there was still time. At that point, my whole strategy was just trying to make sure that I had a blade that could be tested, which was going to be a challenge considering the largest piece of stock I had was ¼-inch by 1 1/2-inch in cross section.

Q: What surprised you throughout the experience?

I won. Beyond that, the number of people involved in the production of the show, who are never seen on camera. During the three-hour forge sessions, there are easily more than 10 people just operating camera and sound equipment on the forge floor, all of us have at least one, more likely two or three cameras on us at any point during the three-hour sessions.

Also the lengths that they go to to ensure that everything is fair, the rules are followed, and that what you are seeing is real, despite the fact that only a tiny fraction of the footage makes it to the final edit. Seriously!

Beyond that, you expect that a reality show-type competition would have all sorts of artificially produced animosity between contestants to make drama happen? There was none of that. The production team was very professional and did nothing to try to encourage fake drama. While the four of us ribbed each other constantly in between the timed sessions, it was all good natured and we were laughing constantly (even when someone was the recipient of a particularly good barb) and have stayed in touch in the weeks since. We have plans to continue a good-natured series of build-off competitions under the name “Drunken Monkey Brotherhood Forge” to keep the camaraderie going.

Q: Brock, one of the other contestants, wore Ren Faire garb. Did you ever discuss the SCA with him?

I asked him if he does SCA. He does Ren Faire and LARP (live-action roleplaying), and that is where he makes his money.

Q: Have you ever entered any forging competitions before this? Do you plan on entering any future ones?

I do not typically do competitions, really not my style. Just like fencing tournaments, I feel most competitions bring out the worst in people and I want no part of that. This looked like fun and a unique opportunity, so I did it, not really to win, but just to do it. I had fun, and the experience was great, so I would go back and do it again given the opportunity.

Q: Is the $10,000 prize going toward any specific equipment or materials?

Medical debt. I plan to pay off some stuff, then the money that is no longer going to the creditors will go towards getting back to Florence and Munich, and taking the curator of European Weapons Collections at the Royal Armory at Leeds up on his invitation to take a close look at some pieces in the collections there.

Q: Did you get to keep either of the blades you created?

All weapons produced are property of the History Channel.

Q: Any suggestions or tips for others who want to try entering this competition?

My only real tip is this is an extreme athletic event with a technical challenge and a fire show. The round one conditions in the forge are tough, and have taken out several competitors, including one who had to be hospitalized. Understanding metallurgy and edge geometry is essential, as well as the ability to think on the fly.

 

If you missed the broadcast on the History Channel, you can see it here on the show’s webpage.

Master Thorpe’s metalworking business, Sunshadow Designs, can be found here on Facebook and here on the web.


Categories: SCA news sites

Human blood found on Revolutionary War musket ball

History Blog - Fri, 2017-05-19 23:12

Archaeologists have discovered remnants of human blood on a musket ball discovered at Monmouth Battlefield Park in New Jersey, site of the June 28th, 1778, Battle of Monmouth. This is the first time human blood has been found on Revolutionary War artillery shot. The site has been excavated regularly for close to 30 years by the Battlefield Restoration and Archaeological Volunteer Organization (BRAVO). They’ve unearthed thousands of artifacts, including musket balls, but none of them showed any evidence of having struck anybody.

On April 16th of last year, BRAVO volunteer Bill Hermstedt found yet another musket ball. It was a piece of canister shot, one of multiple lead or iron balls packed into a metal canister and shot out of a cannon spraying the field with shrapnel. This one wasn’t like the many previous such discoveries. Battlefield archaeologist Dan Sivilich noticed upon close examination that there seemed to be an impression of fabric on the surface, perhaps made when the ball hit someone, tearing through his uniform. A second shot also appeared to have a possible textile imprint. In addition to being a battlefield archaeologist and president of BRAVO, Sivilich is an expert in musket and lead shot. He quite literally wrote the book about them — Musket Ball and Small Shot Identification: A Guide — so he knows a stand-out find when he sees one.

BRAVO sent the two balls with fabric impressions and two other artillery shots of interest to PaleoResearch Institute, Inc. in Golden, Colorado for analysis. One of them, the musket ball, came back positive for proteins found in human blood.

The canister shot in question was fired, Sivilich said, by the Americans into the British 42nd regiment. “They were trapped in an orchard just outside of Route 522,” Sivilich explained. “The American artillery line had them pinned down for a while.”

Legend has it that Molly Pitcher was shuttling water to the artillery from a nearby spring when her husband, William Hays, became incapacitated. She took his place at the cannon, so the story goes. When the smoke cleared, according to accounts from the period, the orchard was strewn with dead and injured British soldiers. The bloody piece of canister shot “may have been sitting underneath a piece of corn stalk,” Sivilich said. “We just got lucky.” [...]

“Based on its deformation, it did not appear to hit bone,” Sivilich said. “It hit soft tissue, went through the body and obviously ended up in the ground. It could have gone through a thigh, an arm, or it could have been a belly wound. We don’t know if it was fatal or not.”

Fought between George Washington’s Continental Army and the British Army under the new Commander-in-Chief for North America Sir Henry Clinton, the Battle of Monmouth resulted in a stand-off, but in effect it was a significant victory for Washington because for the first time the rag-tag Continental Army had succeeded in a pitched battle against the larger, better trained and better armed British. Fortified with French support and after a long, cold winter of constant drills and training in Valley Forge, the Americans finally proved themselves as a viable fighting force on the field at Monmouth.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

SCA Artisans List Website Launched

East Kingdom Gazette - Fri, 2017-05-19 15:03

Tamaris painting. Image via Wikipedia commons, from an uncited French manuscript of Giovanni Boccaccio’s Des Cleres et Nobles Femmes, 1403.

Greetings all from the Kingdom A&S Minister, Master Philip White.

One of my goals in this office is to connect people with teachers and make learning more accessible. I’d like to see people working with other artisans more easily and to become better partners while developing a stronger community.

Another one of my goals is to not reinvent the wheel. If we have people already working on projects then let’s see if the East Kingdom can benefit form them too.

Master Lorenzo, from Meridies, has been working on an SCA Artisans List.
Click on the link and give it a look!

SCA Artisans Website

Full disclosure! Please note!
* The Mobile Interface is read-only.
* This is a work in process!
* There will be edits and improvements.
* We know it is not perfect.
* The list has been pre-loaded based off of the Order of Precedence published online.

I’ve tried it myself! I set up my registration and logged in. I’ve updated my information and finished setting up my account.

It is really easy to use.

The more people who participate the better the tool can become. There is a name search function but also by group or State or interest.

We could also even use this for local groups to register artisans, or set up judging, or classes, or something other things. There are options!

Remember… Have fun! Teach! Learn!

Your Servant to Command,

~p.w.


Filed under: Announcements Tagged: a&s, artisans, Arts and Sciences, database, websites

Rijksmuseum acquires 1st photo illustrated book by 1st female photographer

History Blog - Thu, 2017-05-18 21:08

The Rijksmuseum has acquired an extremely rare copy of the first photographically illustrated book, a compendium of British algae created and privately published by botanist Anna Atkins. The museum bought the book from a private collector for €450,000 ($500,000) with funding from the lottery and family foundations.

These were contact prints, technically photograms rather than photographs, made by placing the dried botanical specimen on cyanotype paper. The process was developed in 1842 by astronomer Sir John Herschel who used it as a tool to make quick copies of his notes and drawings (architects quickly followed suit, hence the blueprint). It was Anna Atkins, a personal friend of Sir John’s, who saw the potential of cyanotypes as scientifically accurate illustrations of botanical specimens.

Born in Tunbridge, Kent, in 1799, Anna Atkins was raised by her father, John George Children, after her mother died when Anna was still a baby from the effects of childbirth. Children was an accomplished chemist, mineralogist and zoologist who worked as a librarian in the British Library, was made a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1807 and served as its Secretary in the 1820s and 30s. Under her father’s care, Anna received a rigorous scientific education that was extremely rare for girls of her time. She married in 1825, but continued to pursue her interests in the natural sciences, collecting and drying botanical specimens.

Her collection of dried plants gained recognition in the scientific community for its depth and breadth. She gave some of her specimens to the Kew Gardens museum and became a member of the Botanical Society of London in 1839. She would ultimately gift her vast collection to the British Museum in 1865.

She began to experiment with photography in 1841, buying a camera on the advice of William Henry Fox Talbot, an old family friend who in addition to being a mathematician and optician was the inventor of the salted paper and calotype processes. Atkins is often credited with being the first female photographer, although Constance Talbot, William’s wife, has a competing claim to the title. Neither’s photographs have survived, so there’s no way to adjudicate the dispute.

As a young woman, Anna had laboured extensively to create 250 engravings to illustrate her father’s translation of Lamarck’s Genera of Shells (published anonymously in 1823). She was intrigued by the idea of a system that would reproduce plant specimens more precisely instead of relying on the artistic talent of the engraver. Twenty years after she produced engravings of shells for her father’s treatise, Anna Atkins had mastered Sir John Herschel’s cyanotype process and went to work documenting her collection of seaweed specimens. Between 1843 and 1853, she made photograms and published them in a series of handwritten volumes.

For the various editions, Atkins produced thousands of cyanotypes, or blueprints. In those days, this photographic technique was a relatively simple and inexpensive way of making contact prints. By using two ferric salts, and exposure to strong light, a Prussian blue colour is created. Nevertheless, this process took a great deal of time and effort. All the stages had to be performed by hand: light sensitising the paper, exposure, rinsing and drying. The prints could only be made when there was sufficient sunlight, which is one more reason why Atkins took 10 years to complete her work.

During those 10 years, Atkins produced editions of different size and length. Today fewer than 20 are known to exist, many of them incomplete. The British Library has an extra-long edition (429 pages), which they have digitized so you can browse page by page. The Royal Society’s copy (389 plates on 403 pages) is believed to be the one which comes closest to Anna Atkins’ original plan for the book. The version acquired by the Rijksmuseum is an especially fine edition because it contains 307 photograms, all in excellent condition, and because it retains its original 19th century binding.

Photographs of British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions will go on display at the Rijksmuseum’s New Realities. Photography in the Nineteenth Century exhibition which runs from June 17th to September 17th of this year.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Preparing our history for the East Kingdom 50th Anniversary / Préparation de notre histoire pour le 50ième anniversaire du Royaume de l’Est

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2017-05-18 15:42

En français

Greetings to the populace of the East Kingdom,

In June of 2018 we will be celebrating our 50th Anniversary as the second kingdom of the SCA. As we prepared for the SCA 50th last year, we learned quickly that although we’re amazing at exploring and maintaining the history of other periods and people, we’ve not been completely successful in documenting our own. The East is not alone in this. Throughout the event I had variations of the same conversations with people from every kingdom there. Gaps in our story. Pages, photos, and names, simply missing.

Presently we’re in the very early days of planning for the 2018 event. With that in mind I’m reaching out and asking everyone to begin the process of preparing and organizing, bringing up to date, or constructing your areas, and your own history within the SCA.

If you are an area’s Historian that’s great! Please send me your contact information. If your area does not have a Historian, I ask that you please select someone to represent your area, and again send me their information.

Along with this I also ask for everyone to please update your EK Wiki pages. If you don’t have a page, please consider creating one. We used the Wiki extensively last year, and it’s a great way to get to know your fellow populace members. If you’re not familiar with the EK Wiki, it can be found at wiki.eastkingdom.org. We do ask however, although the nature of Wiki is anyone can work on anyone else’s page, please refrain from doing so without permission. When in doubt please reach out to Master Michel, the web minister in charge of the Wiki for assistance or guidance. He can be reached by e-mail.

I’m very excited about continuing the process of discovering the East Kingdom through our society’s history. 50 years is a long time and I know, because I’ve been told again and again, that there are many hidden treasures in garages, attics, basements, and closets. Not to mention the stuff on open display on walls, tables, and bookcases. If you have not but have been meaning to, now is a great time to start documenting it. Just think of the stories you’ll be able to share.

Thank you all so much. I look forward to seeing what the Hall of History will become. I’ll keep you posted as things move forward.

Yours in service,

Lady Magdelena Camaninte

East Kingdom Historian

En français
Traduction: Behi Kirsa Oyutai

Salutations à la population du Royaume de l’Est,

En juin 2018, nous célébrerons notre cinquantième anniversaire comme second Royaume de la SCA. Comme nous nous préparions pour le cinquantième anniversaire de la SCA l’an passé, nous avons rapidement réalisé que bien que nous soyons excellents pour explorer et maintenir l’histoire d’autres périodes et personnes, nos efforts n’ont pas été complètement fructueux pour documenter la nôtre. L’Est n’est pas seul dans cette situation. Au travers de cet événement, j’ai eu des conversations similaires avec des gens provenant de tous les autres royaumes. Des trous dans notre histoire. Des pages, photos, noms, simplement manquants.

Présentement, nous sommes dans les toutes premières étapes de planification pour l’événement en 2018. En gardant ceci en tête, je cherche dès maintenant à rejoindre toutes les personnes détenant des informations afin de commencer le processus de préparer et d’organiser, de mettre à jour, ou de construire vos propres sections, et votre propre histoire dans la SCA.

Si vous êtes l’Historien d’un groupe, c’est une excellente nouvelle ! S’il-vous-plaît, veuillez envoyer vos informations de contact à Historian@eastkingdom.org. Si votre région n’a pas d’Historien, je vous demanderais de bien vouloir soumettre la candidature d’une personne afin de représenter votre région, et encore, de bien vouloir soumettre leurs informations.

De plus, j’aimerais demander à tous de bien vouloir mettre à jour vos pages Wiki du Royaume de l’Est. Si vous n’avez pas de page, considérez en créer une. Nous avons utilisé le Wiki de manière importante l’an passé, et c’est une excellente manière de mieux connaître les autres membres de la population. Si vous n’êtes pas familiers avec le Wiki du Royaume de l’Est, vous pouvez le consulter au Wiki.eastkingdom.org. Nous vous demandons cependant, même si la nature d’un Wiki est que tout le monde peut faire des altérations sur les pages de tout le monde, de ne pas effectuer de changements sans permission. Si vous avez un doute à ce sujet, contactez Maître Michel, le ministre web en charge du Wiki pour un conseil ou de l’assistance. Il est possible de le rejoindre à : Mike@knauer.org.

Je suis très enthousiaste de continuer le processus de découverte du Royaume de l’Est au travers de l’histoire de notre Société. 50 ans est une longue période, et je sais, parce qu’on me l’a sans cesse répété, qu’il y a plusieurs trésors cachés dans des garages, greniers, sous-sols et armoires, sans mentionner tous les items exposés sur les murs, tables et bibliothèques.
Si vous aviez l’intention de commencer à documenter, mais que vous n’avez pas commencé, maintenant est le moment parfait pour ce faire. Pensez seulement aux histoires que vous serez capables de partager.

Merci à vous tous, j’attends avec impatience de voir ce que le Hall de l’histoire deviendra. Je vous tiendrai informé à mesure que les choses avanceront.

En Service, Dame Magdelena Camaninte,
Historienne du Royaume de l’Est


Filed under: Announcements, En français Tagged: 50th Anniversary, east kingdom events, EK 50th

Staff Announced for Their Royal Highnesses Ivan and Mathilde/Annonce de l’équipe pour Leur Royales Majestés Ivan et Mathilde

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2017-05-18 07:40

En français

Their Highnesses are grateful for the counsel and efforts of many people. Should you need anything at all from Their Household, please contact the appropriate staff member.

Chief of Staff:  Baroness Christina Jenevra de Carvalhal
Deputy  Chief of Staff: Mistress Elizabeth Elenore Lovell
Vox Regis: Master Malcolm Bowman
Chamberlains: Baron Goerijs Goriszoon and Baron Fearghus O’Conchobhair
Event & Travel  Coordinator: Mistress Sabina Luttrell
Gift Basket & Largesse Coordinator: Duchess Caoilfhionn inghean Fhaolain
Awards Coordinator: Duke Brennan mac Fearghus
Mistress of the Chancery: Mistress Ardenia ARuadh
Favor Coordinator: Baroness Cateline la Broderesse
Mistress of the Wardrobe: Baroness Tysha z Kieva
Head Retainer: Baroness Mari Clock van Hoorn
Captain of the Guard: Baron Vachir Artslanjin

Original post.

En français

Leurs Altesses sont reconnaissantes pour le conseil et les efforts fournis par de nombreuses personnes. Si vous avez besoin de quoi que ce soit de la part de Leur Maisonnée, veuillez s’il-vous-plaît contacter la personne appropriée de leur équipe.

Chef de Maisonnée:  Baroness Christina Jenevra de Carvalhal
Députée Chef de Maisonnée: Maîtresse Elizabeth Elenore Lovell
Vox Regis: Maître Malcolm Bowman
Chambellans: Baron Goerijs Goriszoon et Baron Fearghus O’Conchobhair
Coordonatrice des Événements et des Voyages: Maîtresse Sabina Luttrell
Coordonatrice des Largesses et Paniers Cadeaux: Duchesse Caoilfhionn inghean Fhaolain
Coordonateur des Reconnaissances: Duc Brennan mac Fearghus
Maîtresse de la Chancellerie: Maîtresse Ardenia ARuadh
Coordonatrice des Faveurs: Baronne Cateline la Broderesse
Maîtresse de la Garde-Robe: Baronne Tysha z Kieva
Chef des Dames de Compagnie: Baronne Mari Clock van Hoorn
Capitaine de la Garde: Baron Vachir Artslanjin

Translation by: Behi Kirsa Oyutai


Filed under: Announcements Tagged: Ivan and Mathilde, royal missive, royal staff, royal wishes

Ashmolean acquires unique Civil War painting

History Blog - Wed, 2017-05-17 23:44

The Ashmolean Museum has acquired an exceptional group painting by Civil War-era court painter William Dobson. It was acquired through the Acceptance in Lieu scheme, which allows donation of nationally significant artworks and antiquities in place of payment of taxes owing, and allocated to the Ashmolean because of the painting’s unique relevance to Oxford during the Civil War.

The work was commissioned by Colonel John Russell, commander of Prince Rupert’s elite Bluecoats regiment, in the winter of 1645–6, less than a year before Dobson’s death. The painting captures three of the Royalist commanders: Prince Rupert, King Charles I’s nephew, Colonel William Legge, the Governor of Oxford, and John Russell. This was a tough time for the three men and for the Royalist cause in general. Rupert, the figure on the left, had just been defeated at Bristol, surrendering the main Royalist port to the Parliamentarians. John Russell, a supporter of Rupert’s who had valiantly fought at the Battle of Naseby and barely survived to fight again at Bristol, is on the right. Legge stands in the center.

The painting is filled with symbols and references to the recent discord between the King and his nephew and to Rupert’s enduring loyalty. The scroll which Rupert holds in his right hand may refer to the blank sheet which Charles had sent to him on which to compose his confession. Instead, being innocent, Rupert asked Legge to return the letter empty, which greatly moved the King and resulted in a pardon. Rupert has also discarded his scarlet cloak which he was recorded as wearing when he rode out of Bristol following his surrender.

Beside the cloak is a dog wearing a collar with the initials ‘P.R.’ The dog is a motif traditionally associated with faithfulness and may, in this painting, be intended to stand for Boye, Rupert’s famed white poodle who rode into battle with the Prince and was killed in 1644 at Marston Moor. To Parliamentarian pamphleteers Boye was a ‘devil dog’ credited with supernatural powers, such as being weapon-proof and able to catch bullets with his teeth. Among Royalists, Boye was also immensely popular and as ‘Sergeant-Major-General Boy’, he became the army’s mascot. There is also, in the painting, hints of revenge likely to be directed towards George Digby, 2nd Earl of Bristol, who led the faction against Rupert and tried to convince the King that his nephew was a traitor. The central figure dips his cockade in the glass of wine which evokes biblical episodes where clothing stained with wine symbolized vengeance.

Oxford became the new Royalist capital in 1642 after Parliamentarians took London and King Charles I fled. There he established his court in exile where it remained until the city was successfully besieged by Parliamentarian forces in 1646 and Charles escaped yet again, this time disguised as a servant.

Elias Ashmole was a staunch Royalist. He left London in 1642 too, and moved to Oxford in 1644 where he was appointed an ordnance officer for the King’s army. A lawyer by trade, Ashmole was a man of eclectic interests including alchemy, botany, astronomy and collecting antiques, coins and books. He took full advantage of the opportunities his new town had to offer. In 1645 he was accepted to Brasenose College where he would pursue his studies in natural philosophy, mathematics, astronomy and astrology.

Long after the Civil War was over and just a year before the Restoration, Ashmole’s renowned collection of coins, book and manuscripts was geometrically expanded when John Tradescant the Younger, who like his father was a famed gardener (they’re both buried in the St. Mary-at-Lambeth churchyard) and collector of varied treasures from books and coins to weapons, taxidermied animals and curiosities of natural science, either gave his collection to Ashmole or was conned out of it by Ashmole in 1659.

The Ashmole-Tradescant collection was bequeathed to Oxford by Ashmole in 1677. In 1683 he had the whole kit and caboodle moved to a new museum on Broad Street custom-built to house the treasures. The collection was by then so large that it filled 26 great chests and had to be moved to the museum by barge. Unlike its predecessors, which were either private holdings or used for institutional research and teaching, the original Ashmolean was the first modern public museum, forming the blueprint for museums as we know them today. That first Ashmolean building on Broad Street still stands, now as the Museum of the History of Science.

Friday, May 19th, is the 400th anniversary of Elias Ashmole’s birthday. The Ashmolean will be celebrating their founder’s 400th birthday with a grand parade down Broad Street by Civil War reenactors. King Charles I will lead the procession at the head of his army. When they reach the Ashmolean, they will join Elias Ashmole’s birthday party where reenactors will bring to life the characters in his 400th birthday present painting.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Nodosaur fossil so well-preserved it boggles minds

History Blog - Tue, 2017-05-16 23:20


A dinosaur fossil that was discovered in a bitumen pit in Alberta, Canada, in 2011 is the best-preserved specimen of a nodosaur ever discovered, and it is truly a spectacle to behold. The herbivore died between 110 and 112 million years ago in a riverbed and was swept to sea where it was swiftly buried in the mud and sediment of the seabed. Resting on its back, the nodosaur’s soft tissues, armour plating and thorny ridges became mineralized, preserving its form in stone.

Scientists think the entire body was fossilized, but by the time mechanical excavator operator Shawn Funk unearthed it in the Millennium Mine, the front half of it from nose to hips, about nine feet long, was all that could be recovered. Nodosaurs averaged about 18 feet in length and weighed 3,000 pounds, so they were formidable creatures, although they lacked the flashy spiked tail club their ankylosaur cousins used to break the shins of would-be predators.

The nodosaur is now in the capable hands of the experts at the fossil prep lab at Alberta’s Royal Tyrrell Museum. They determined that it is a new species of nodosaur as well as the oldest dinosaur ever discovered in Alberta. The painstaking work of excavating the mineralized beast from the surrounding rock has been visible to the public through the lab gallery window since its discovery.

For those of us not in Alberta, National Geographic has been granted exclusive access to this extraordinary find. Photographer Robert Clark took many exceptional photographs, and even he, who has doubtless seen many wonders as a National Geographic photographer, was dumbfounded by the preservation of the nodosaur.

The more I look at it, the more mind-boggling it becomes. Fossilized remnants of skin still cover the bumpy armor plates dotting the animal’s skull. Its right forefoot lies by its side, its five digits splayed upward. I can count the scales on its sole. Caleb Brown, a postdoctoral researcher at the museum, grins at my astonishment. “We don’t just have a skeleton,” he tells me later. “We have a dinosaur as it would have been.”

For paleontologists the dinosaur’s amazing level of fossilization—caused by its rapid undersea burial—is as rare as winning the lottery. Usually just the bones and teeth are preserved, and only rarely do minerals replace soft tissues before they rot away. There’s also no guarantee that a fossil will keep its true-to-life shape. Feathered dinosaurs found in China, for example, were squished flat, and North America’s “mummified” duck-billed dinosaurs, among the most complete ever found, look withered and sun dried.

Paleobiologist Jakob Vinther, an expert on animal coloration from the U.K.’s University of Bristol, has studied some of the world’s best fossils for signs of the pigment melanin. But after four days of working on this one—delicately scraping off samples smaller than flecks of grated Parmesan—even he is astounded. The dinosaur is so well preserved that it “might have been walking around a couple of weeks ago,” Vinther says. “I’ve never seen anything like this.”

Some people are making Zuul comparisons, but scientists already snagged that little pop culture gem as the official name of an ankylosaur unearthed in Montana which also had spectacular soft-tissue fossilization. They called it Zuul crurivastator, meaning “Zuul, destroyer of shins,” which I think we can all agree is one of the all-time great feats of nomenclature. I think the Alberta nodosaur bears a more notable resemblance to the Gorn, of original Star Trek fame. That glaring blank eyesocket with the thorny brow ridge is so Gorny.

National Geographic has created a 3D virtual model of the nodosaur fossil that is one of the best I’ve ever seen. As you might expect, you can zoom in and out, turn it around and view it from different perspectives, but this one has tons of additional features. As you scroll, the parts are exploded and labeled so you can get a thorough idea of what bits go where and what function they performed. A drawing of a complete nodosaur as it would have looked in life is used to diagram what parts of it have survived in the fossil.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Court Report: Blackstone Raids XXVI, A.S. 51

AEthelmearc Gazette - Tue, 2017-05-16 15:15

From the Scrolls of the Reign of Timothy and  Gabrielle, King and Queen of Æthelmearc, as recorded by Dame Kateryna ty Isaf, Jewel of Æthelmearc Herald with the assistance of THL Kathryn McLuing, Millrind Herald at Blackstone Raids in the Barony of Blackstone Mountain on April 29, Anno Societatis LI. The Court of Their Majesties, Timothy and Gabrielle was opened.

Their Majesties called forth Tarryn of Port Oasis.  Having been observant of the handiwork of this fine lady in leather and cloth gracing the various members of her shire, Their Majesties inducted her into the Order of the Sycamore and further awarded her Arms.  The scroll was limned by Lady Elspeth of Wurmwald and calligraphed by Baroness Graidhne ni Ruaidh.

Tarryn’s Sycamore scroll by Lady Elspeth of Wurmwald and Mistress Graidhne ni Ruadh.

The Court was suspended.

Their Majesties’ court was resumed later in the afternoon.

Their Majesties called forth all the children present and instructed Lord Sittius to take the chest of toys and run away.  The children were instructed they may to take one toy each, beginning with the youngest child present.  A countdown was made and the children chased the toy chest bearer from the court.

Their Majesties invited King Edmund of the Midrealm before Them.  They spoke of Their appreciation for His Majesties presence and how They looked forward to the reign of His successors.  His Majesty Edmund offered gifts to Their Majesties Timothy and Gabrielle and thanked Them both for the fine day he had.

His Majesty Timothy apologized to His Guests and the assembled court for having been so thoroughly robbed of his lunch money by the fighters on this day and commented how it was clear to him that He had indeed been a poor host in this respect but He appreciated the thorough ‘whoppin’ He received from Count Cellach. Their Majesties and King Edmund exchanged hugs and His Majesty Edmund took His leave of the court.

Their Majesties gave The Baron and Baroness of Blackstone Mountain leave to hold Their Baronial Court.

Baron Ichijo and Baroness Cerridwen hold court. Photo by Lady Aine ny Allane.

Their Majesties called forth Matilda de Crepelgate and seeing and especially hearing her fine work as the Onyx Herald of the Barony of Blackstone Mountain, made her a Lady of the court and Awarded her Arms with a scroll painted and gilded by Lady Vivienne of Yardley and calligraphed by Isabella Montoya.

Their Majesties then invited Lady Sigrid Schreiber before Them.  Lady Sigrid presented Their Majesties with portraits she created of both.  Their Majesties greatly appreciated the artistry of the beautiful portraits and They thanked her for such a lovely gift.

Lady Sigrid presents Their Majesties with painted portraits. Photo by Lady Aine.

Their Majesties called forth Guillame des Aix an Provence.  When the gentle called forth did not appear, His Grace Duke Rurik Longsword advised he had seen the man on site and rushed from the court to fetch him and bring him to Their Majesties.

Their Majesties called forth Borivoj Skala.  For his fighting enthusiasm and stamina, They were moved to make him a Lord of the court and thus Awarded him Arms with a scroll painted by Baron Caleb Reynolds and calligraphed by Maureen O’Shea.

Their Majesties called forth Gretchen McKlay.  They, having heard of her sumptuous Tudor feasts, made her a Lady of the court and Awarded her Arms.  The scroll to mark the occasion was painted by Lady Felice de Thornton and calligraphy was by Isabelle Montoya.

Their Majesties called forth Jos of St Alban and Rohesia of Whytemere.  Remarking on how both did much service for their local group They were moved to Award both Arms.  His Majesty commented on how Jos had even built his own Viking tent, stating He was quite surprised at his lack of Viking attire, but thought the clothes most impressive nonetheless.  The scroll for Lord Jos was pained by Lady Saskia Feldmeyrin and the scroll for Lady Rohesia was painted by Mistress Felicity Fluβmullnerin and calligraphed by Baroness Ekaterina Volkova.

Lord Jos and Lady Rohesia receive their AoAs. Photo by Lady Aine ny Allane.

Their Majesties called forth Lady Barbaia of Misty Highlands, who They were advised was not able to be at the event.  Having discovered that it would be unlikely They would see her during Their reign, They asked Sir Gareth Kincaid to convey the scroll to her.  In absentia, They inducted her to the Order of the Keystone for her work as Chatelaine, Webminister, and Autocrat for the Shire of Misty Highlands.  The scroll upon a leather shield was created by Mistress Juliana Delamare.

Their Majesties called forth Lord Gremian Ulfhedna.  They advised that his dedication to his fighting, most especially time spent doing pick-ups on the field moved Them to make him a member of the Order of the Golden Alce.  The scroll was limned by Lady Elspeth of Wurmwald and calligraphed by Baroness Graidhne ni Ruaidh.

Lord Guillaume’s AoA scroll by THLady Pippi Ulfsdottir and Mistress Antoinette de la Croix.

His Grace Duke Rurik having fetched Guillame, he presented THL Guillaume le Noir to Their Majesties.  His Majesty, commenting that this appeared to be the incorrect Guillame as He was certain that the gentleman brought before Him had already received this award, He nevertheless asked the Herald to read the scroll for the Award of Arms present to Guillame des Aix an Provence.  After much merriment, Their Majesties determined that Lord Guillame des Aix would likely not be in attendance of the court and requested that Lord Fiachna accept the Award on his behalf and convey the story of how it was there presented unto the newly made Lord.  The scroll was drawn and calligraphed by Mistress Antoinette de la Croix, painted by THL Phelippe Ulfsdotter.

Their Majesties called forth Lord Andreas di Rossi.  Seeing he too was not in the hall, Duke Rurik fetched him, with encouragement to obtain the correct person this time.  Once fetched, Their Majesties noting that he was a workhorse of the barony and the “One Man Army of Blackstone,” They inducted him into the Order of the Keystone with a scroll painting by Baron Caleb Reynolds and calligraphy by Isabella Montoya.

Their Majesties called forth THLord Ulrich von Schwartzburg. They inducted him into the Order of the Keystone for his work as Shire Exchequer and Knight Marshall, and his work ensuring the fighters of the Kingdom have both clothes and armor.  The scroll was the work of THLady Kathryn McLuing.

Their Majesties called forth THLady Kathryn McLuing.  Noting that her work in had been handed out in both the Baronial and Kingdom court this day as well as her work making garb for herself and Gold Key, They were moved to induct her into the Order of the Sycamore with a scroll by the hand of Mistress Maria Christina de Cordoba.

Their Majesties called forth Lord Nikoli Lupiescu.  They, having known of his work assisting with armor repair and making armor, also noted that he was a fighter of some renown beyond his skill in emergency armor.  They inducted him into the Order of the Golden Alce with a scroll drawn by Luca da Cola, painted by Lady Rignach Inghean ui Chonaill and calligraphed by Baroness Graidhne ni Ruaidh.

Their Majesties, stating a song was required, invited before them THLady Silence de Cherbourg.  Her Ladyship sang a contrefactum (filk) of a 12th century cantiga, with lyrics created by her hand with assistance from Master Michael Alewright and Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope. The piece called forth Brehyres Gwendolyn the Graceful to come before Their Majesties as she has been chosen for song and poem to sit vigil in contemplation of becoming a member of the Order of the Laurel.

THLady Silence singing the Laurel Writ for Brehyres Gwendolyn the Graceful. Photo by Lady Aine.

Brehyres Gwendolyn was escorted to the court by Duke Rurik while the members of the Most Noble Order of the Laurel were invited to attend. Their Majesties commanded her to present herself to Them at War Practice to sit vigil and answer Their question, if she was prepared to become a member of the Order of the Laurel. Scroll by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope.

Her Majesty then asked that THLord Deryk Archer to come forth. Her Majesty thanked him for the archery targets that She so enjoyed that day. She was also advised that Lord Deryk was aided all day in keeping records and scoring all day by Torvi fra Bergstopt of the Shire of Montevale and asked him to bring her to the court. Her Majesty named them both Her inspiration of the day and bestowed upon each a Golden Escarbuncle.

THLord Deryk and m’lady Torvi receive Golden Escarbuncles. Photo by Lady Aine.

Their Majesties asked that the scribes who contributed to the works of art presented this day to the members of the populace please stand and be acknowledged for their gifts.

Duke Sven, having been moved by His Majesty losing so much lunch money, offered His Majesty a bag of coin so that He might be able to eat at least a small amount of food.

Duke Sven ensures that His Majesty has lunch money. Photo by Lady Aine.

There being no further business this day, Their Majesties court was thus concluded.


Categories: SCA news sites

Edward Hopper in Motion

History Blog - Mon, 2017-05-15 22:13

It’s the 50th anniversary of Edward Hopper’s death today. To celebrate the realist painter’s oeuvre, Orbitz (yes, the discount travel site) has created animated versions of nine of his most recognizable and iconic works.

I generally enjoy attempts to add dimension to stills or artworks, for instance the recent trend in documentaries to give a 3D effect to old photographs. A subtle animated element can be effective as long as it makes sense in the context of the scene and it isn’t just distracting. All in all, I find the Hopper animations fairly good. There are some things I’d do differently, mainly fewer short repetitive loops and more smooth continuous action. Some elements — smoke over coffee cups, flickering neon signs — look too rushed. However, Hopper’s characteristic urban scenes often depicted through a window with us as the voyeurs lend themselves well to this sort of treatment. With a few adjustments, it would make a damn cool Tumblr.

Morning Sun and New York Movie are probably my favorites. The slow brightening of the scene in the former brings the title into the action, and the moving picture actually moving is nicely handled in the latter. The flicker in the theater is a bit overdone, in my opinion, with too strong a contrast of light and dark. It doesn’t match what’s being shown on the screen.

I was most looking forward to Nighthawks, but alas, it’s my least favorite of the animations. The blinking light is on too short of a loop and it doesn’t really match the scene because it’s the interior lighting of the diner that flickers instead of a neon sign like Chop Suey. Neon signs flicker all the time. The blinking neon light has become an iconic representation of night life — a little rundown, a little busted, but still vital in its color and brightness. If all the lights in a diner kept turning off and on, you’d just call the power company, and you certainly wouldn’t settle in for the night to enjoy the splendid urban isolation because it would be freaking torture.

The descriptive blurbs on the side are well done. My one criticism there is that they should link to the original paintings instead of just telling you which museums they’re in now.


Edward Hopper In Motion by Orbitz


 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Quest Artisan’s Row

East Kingdom Gazette - Mon, 2017-05-15 21:22

Oyez! Oyeeeeez!

Be it known that in but a fortnight, we will once again be engaged in a Quest!

As such, I tell you, I am greatly enthused to be coordinating Artisan’s Row!

But, of course, we would gladly welcome MORE artisans and alchemists to come and display their gifts. ‘Twould be, as well, a most advantageous time to bring forth those projects that need more space, or make more of a mess, than one can manage at other events. In particular are looking for potters, dyers and anyone else interested in coming out and taking advantage of this opportunity.

All are welcome!

Artisans Row will be officially open from 1 to 5 pm on Saturday, but I will arrange to have one “Ye Olde Poppe-Up” open all weekend, and invite all to come sit and work on their projects in the company of friends.

Here are the most kind Gentles that, as of now, will be demonstrating their skills:

Baron Erec – woodworking
Cóemgein Mac Íomhair (Kevin) – metalworking with his forge
Ceara – jewelry making
Galen – Make-your-own-Hurley-with-hand-tools station too –
Jonathan – propane- torch metal working & casting
Sof’ia – Encaustic painting

If you are at all interested please send me an email with your project and any accomidation you require.

YIS,
Lady Sof’ia Zhirinskaia
Susanrae@gmail.com


Filed under: Announcements, Events Tagged: announcements, artisans, artisans row, quest, volunteers needed

Kingdom Seneschal stepping down

East Kingdom Gazette - Mon, 2017-05-15 21:15

Greetings unto the People of the East,

After 3 and a half years serving the East as Kingdom Seneschal, it is time for me to look for my successor. I will be stepping down at the Coronation of Ivan and Matilde and TRH will be interviewing interested parties over the next few months. If you are interested in the position please send a letter of interest and a resume to the King, Queen, Prince, Princess and myself (please include me on all letters of interest).

I am not going to include a list of duties and responsibilities. If you are interested but don’t know what the office entails, talk to the next Kingdom Seneschal about becoming a deputy to get to know the position.

In Service,

Mercedes Vera de Calafia


Filed under: Announcements, Law and Policy, Official Notices Tagged: applications, kingdom officers, seneschal

War Practice Schedules Posted

AEthelmearc Gazette - Mon, 2017-05-15 19:05

Æthelmearc War Practice hosted by the Canton of Steltonwald is coming up this week. The schedules have been posted!

Click HERE (http://www.steltonwald.net/warpractice.html) to see the schedules for:

Some additional information (including Order Meetings, Class Cancellations, and Changes, Artisans’ Playtime, Scarlet Apron, and more) is HERE.

For those interested, here’s the link for the Facebook information for this event.


Categories: SCA news sites

Kingdom Youth Combat Champion’s Tourney at War Practice

AEthelmearc Gazette - Mon, 2017-05-15 09:26

Youth Fighters, pay heed! The Æthelmearc Youth Combat Champions’ Tourney will be held this coming Saturday, May 20th, at Æthelmearc War Practice in the Canton of Steltonwald. Anywhere from one to three Champions will be chosen by Their Majesties, King Timothy and Queen Gabrielle, based on the fighters’ prowess and chivalry. Champions will receive the regalia from the current champions, Karl (Division 1) and Timothy (Division 2), and serve as Kingdom Champions until the next tourney is held by Their Majesties’ successors.

Schedule for youth fighting at War Practice:

Saturday morning:

  • 9:00 am – List opens for inspections
  • 9:30 – Authorizations
  • 10:00 – Youth Champion’s Tourney begins
  • 11:00-12:00 – Melees

The Youth Combat list will be on the main battlefield, to the east of the thrown weapons range and alongside Currie Road. Look for a blue pop-up canopy.

For more information on Æthelmearc War Practice, see the Kingdom website.

If you have any questions about youth combat at Æthelmearc War Practice, please contact the Marshal-in-Charge, Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope.

Youth Combat Melee. Photo by THLady Aaliz de Gant.


Categories: SCA news sites

National Museums Scotland gets Galloway Hoard for £1.98 million

History Blog - Sun, 2017-05-14 23:05

The Queen’s and Lord Treasurer’s Remembrancer (QLTR) has allocated the Galloway Viking Hoard to the National Museums Scotland (NMS) on the condition that they make an ex gratia payment of £1.98 million ($2,550,000) to the finder Derek McLennan who discovered the hoard in 2014. NMS has until November of this year to raise the sum. They’ve set up a donation site (which is showing me a DNS error at the moment, probably because it’s brand new).

The bulk of the find is a rich Viking-age hoard of silver jewellery and ingots. However, it also contains an outstanding range of exceptional precious metal and jewelled items including a rare gold ingot, a gold bird-shaped pin and a decorated silver-gilt cup of Continental or Byzantine origin. The cup is carefully wrapped in textiles and is the only complete lidded vessel of its type ever discovered in Britain or Ireland. This vessel contains further unusual objects: beads; amulets of glass and rock crystal; pilgrimage relics; a silver penannular brooch; another rare gold ingot; five Anglo-Saxon disc brooches of a kind not found in Scotland before; and jewelled aestels, pointers used to read and mark places within medieval manuscripts.

Other finds from around Britain or Ireland have been exceptional for a single type of object—for example, silver brooches or armlets. However, the Galloway Hoard is unique in bringing together a remarkable variety of objects in one discovery, hinting at hitherto unknown connections between people across Europe and beyond. It also contains objects which have never before been discovered in a hoard of this age. Incredibly, fragile textiles, leather and wooden fragments have also survived, providing an extremely rare opportunity to research and reveal many lost aspects of the Viking Age.

The Dumfries and Galloway Council, which launched a campaign earlier this year to keep the hoard in the county where it was discovered, is less than pleased with the QLTR’s decision.

Cathy Agnew, Campaign chair, said: “This treasure was buried in Galloway for safekeeping 1,000 years ago – it is deeply disappointing that the QLTR believes it should be allocated to the National Museum in Edinburgh where it will potentially be lost amongst so many other wonderful artefacts.

“This is a most unfortunate decision for the region and for Scotland. It is doubly disappointing that a more enlightened approach has not been taken, especially as 2017 is Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.

“The support from the public, from academics, politicians of all parties, and so many others – across Scotland and the world – to keep the hoard in Galloway, where it would be cherished, has been magnificent. It is a real shame their voices and their passion have gone unheeded.”

It’s hard for a county council to win against the resources of a national museum, especially when the local museum that would house the hoard has not actually been built yet. They made a valiant effort, drastically increasing the budget for the new Kirkcudbright Art Gallery and raising a great deal of money and support for the cause of keeping the hoard in Dumfries and Galloway. They knew it was a long shot, however, and all the while hoped to be able to come to an agreement with NMS for joint ownership.

National Museums Scotland showed no interest in shared custody. It thinks it is the proper home for a treasure of international significance, because they have the wherewithal and expertise to give it all the care and security such complex, delicate archaeological materials need. The preservation of the extremely rare surviving organic remains in particular requires specialists and facilities that the National Museums can provide. Its location in Edinburgh will also “ensure that the Hoard is seen by the maximum number of people, from Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland, the UK and internationally.”

In its press release on the allocation of the hoard, NMS had this to say on Dumfries and Galloway’s involvement:

National Museums believes that it is important there is a display of the Hoard in Dumfries and Galloway, and intends to continue to seek a dialogue with Dumfries and Galloway Council to ensure that a representative portion of the Hoard goes on long-term display in Kirkcudbright Art Gallery.

It’s not joint ownership, but it’s something. Had they made a tandem bid that was accepted, the bigger museum would almost certainly have had the greater say in the division and exhibition of assets anyway, so in the end the Kirkcudbright Art Gallery might well end up with much the same sort of display it would have had if they had partnered with NMS.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Tomb with 17 mummies found in Minya, Egypt

History Blog - Sat, 2017-05-13 23:32

Archaeologists have discovered a tomb containing at least 17 mummies near Minya, Upper Egypt. The tomb was found more than 25 feet under the village of Tuna al-Gabal where a number of necropolises have been unearthed containing the mummified remains of animals. This one contained some animal coffins (baboons) too, but the stand-out finds are eight limestone and clay sarcophaguses holding well-preserved, linen-wrapped mummified human remains as well as stacked human remains without coffins. Archaeologists also found two papyri inscribed with Demotic script.

The underground burial chamber was first spotted last year by Cairo University students using ground-penetrating radar, but they only knew it was a hollow space until the excavation this week discovered it was a cachette, an unmarked burial site where mummies were secreted to keep them safe from grave robbers. (The endeavor was of limited success; the site does appear to have been interfered with in antiquity or more recently.) The remains have yet to be radiocarbon dated. Researchers believe they may date to the Late Period — from around 600 B.C. until the conquest of Alexander in 332 B.C. — or possibly to the Greco-Roman period dating from Alexander’s conquest to around 300 A.D.

About 150 miles south of Cairo, Minya is the capital of the Minya Governorate, a province rich in archaeological sites including the city of Amarna, built by the Pharaoh Akhetaten and abandoned after his death; Hermopolis Magna, the cult center of the god Toth in ancient Egypt and an important Greco-Roman city where in some Christian traditions the Holy Family was said to have lived after their escape from Herod’s baby killers; Antinopolis, founded by the Emperor Hadrian in honor of his dearest companion Antinous whom he deified after his death by drowning in the Nile; and the Beni Hasan tombs of mongoose-on-a-leash fame.

With such a dense concentration of significant sites spanning the ages from the Old Kingdom to the modern era, you’d think a tomb with a bunch of mummies would hardly be headline news, but this one is unique. For one thing, it’s been a long time since any mummies were found in the area. Not since the discovery of the animal and bird necropolises between 1931 and 1954 have any kind of remains been discovered in Minya. Even more significantly, it’s the first human necropolis discovered in central Egypt to contain such a large number of mummies.

Last but certainly not least:

Archeologists believe that it is the first time to unearth a burial tomb with that number of mummies for ordinary people and in catacombs style. Inside the catacomb, Khaled Anani, Egypt’s Minister of Antiquities referred to the gaps inside the catacombs saying “The more we drill the more we find.”

The Telegraph was given access to the tomb. Four wells of eight meters deep were unearthed, which lead to catacombs where mummies of men, women and children are laid in good shape.

In one chamber inside the tunnels, human bones and skulls are piled. Most of the mummies were laid in lines in both of its sides. While some them were left in plain stone and wooden sarcophagi, others were piled on top of each other.

The well-preserved mummies inside the coffins were given expensive treatment, so it’s likely they were not just regular Joes off the street. Since Minya was known as a center for the worship of the god Toth, they could have been priests associated with his temple.

The excavation has only just begun, and archaeologists expect to find more of the catacomb and more human remains as they proceed. The papyri are being moved to the Grand Egyptian Museum for conservation.

 

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Tartyes, Patsy, and Pie Oh MY!!

East Kingdom Gazette - Sat, 2017-05-13 16:03

From Master Dietrich Swelgengräber.

Empress Honig von Summerfeldt, would like to extend a challenge to all aspiring cooks of the East Kingdom to represent themselves with a presentation of hand pies for an iron age chef competition.

Where: Southern Region War Camp.
June 9th, 2017 – June 11th, 2017
Saturday at 3:00pm

Submissions should include 12-15 hand type pastry with the ingredients of your choosing. Extant and period resources are strongly encouraged. Please include your best redaction and understanding of how the “Hand Pie” was developed and evolved throughout history.

 

Konzil von Konstanz (ÖNB 3044, fol. 48v), c. 1465-1475

 

 


Filed under: Announcements, Events Tagged: Arts and Sciences, baking, competition, Cooking, royal whims, southern region war camp

Spring AE Crown: Video of Finals Round 3

AEthelmearc Gazette - Sat, 2017-05-13 14:58

New Heirs Gareth and Juliana with TRM Timothy and Gabrielle. Photo by Master Liam Mac An TSaoir.

A video of the final round is here on Facebook, courtesy of Baron Friderich Swartzwalder.

 


Categories: SCA news sites